Our “anti-two state, Jerusalem undivided, can’t trust the Palestinians except to miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity” Israeli leader just may get the chance to have his Nixon in China moment. Forget the fact that Netanyahu is seemingly beholden to his religious party members and their reflexive defense of and preference for the status quo. Forget the fact that Pastor Hagee and Christians United for Israel, strong West Bank settlement supporters, are closely aligned with Netanyahu and help fund the natural growth (read ever expanding) settlement community.
Netanyahu has two very critical factors working in his favor: a largely apathetic Israeli public and overwhelmingly low expectations within his own coalition, the Palestinian leaders and Arab League supporters, and much of the world community.
Yes, we’ve read the script, and seen the movie so many times. And we never get to a satisfactory end. Maybe just maybe in a low expectation environment Netanyahu will have the ability to exceed expectations and have the flexibility
(via his unquestioned conservative bona fides) to move closer to what has been a 62 year effort to reach a conclusion. We can only pray Netanyahu has a little “Nixon in China” in his negotiating bag of tricks and the leadership strength to take the necessary steps (and risks) for what will give Israel and the Palestinians a better chance for stability and a sustainable peace.